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Winner, Winner Make-Ahead Chicken Dinner Gives You the Night Off

Assemble today, enjoy tomorrow

by: Paula Roy
Roasted Chicken with cherry tomatoes, garlic and herbs

The last thing I want to do after a day packed full of summertime fun is to come home and start making dinner. This make-ahead chicken dinner is the perfect no-fuss, ‘just pop it in the oven’ meal. Full of family-friendly flavours like tomatoes and garlic, you can quickly assemble it the night before, then pop it in the oven the next day to roast while you decompress (aka drink wine) as it cooks. If you want to jazz things up a bit, consider adding pitted Kalamata olives and a generous squeeze of fresh lemon juice at serving time.


6 – 8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) kosher salt
6 whole cloves garlic, peeled and halved if large
2 cups (500 mL) cherry tomatoes, halved
1 tablespoon (15 mL) olive oil
1 tablespoon (15 mL) balsamic vinegar
Few grinds black pepper
6 sprigs fresh rosemary or thyme

Assemble ahead chicken dinner |


  Preheat oven to 375F.

  Trim chicken pieces of any excess fat then place in a baking dish that’s big enough to allow a gap between each piece of meat. Sprinkle the chicken with salt.

  Sprinkle the tomatoes and garlic over the chicken and tuck them into the gaps between the pieces. Keep the tops of the chicken uncovered so the skin will crisp up.

  Drizzle olive oil and balsamic over everything then top with freshly ground black pepper. 

  Place the rosemary or thyme sprigs over the tomatoes.

  Cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

  Bake, uncovered, for about 45 minutes, until chicken skin is browned and crispy and internal temperature is 170F.

  Serve chicken and tomatoes over rice or buttered noodles, drizzling generously with pan sauce.

Assemble ahead chicken dinner |

Serves 3 – 4 and can easily be doubled or tripled.

Assemble ahead chicken dinner |

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